Developer wants to open mini-Disney World at Six Flags site - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Developer wants to open mini-Disney World at Six Flags site

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NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - A developer wants to turn the old Six Flags site in New Orleans East into a smaller version of Disney World. But nearby residents have mixed emotions about the big plans.

Empty for almost nine years, developer Frank Scurlock wants to turn the land at the old Six Flags site into Transformation Village. The founder of Transformation Village, LLC, says his first priority is to open the shuttered theme park in New Orleans East, then build a water park and even a 450-foot-long Noah's Ark with a recording studio inside. Then, he'll turn his sights to the I-10 corridor. "We have seven miles to work with," said Scurlock.

Along the stretch between the old Six Flags site and the Twin Spans, Scurlock wants to put in a complex that includes a floating hotel, riverboat tours and a water recreation area with a beach near Irish Bayou. Nearby residents are split on the idea.

One woman says, "We like living out here because it's God's country. We don't care to have all that out here, if we wanted to live in the city with all of that stuff, we would move in the city."

Joseph Catchot adds, "I think it would be nice, I think it would really be nice. It would help the land value go up."

Scurlock will present his proposal to the city's Industrial Development Board Tuesday. Two weeks ago, the board heard from another company vying to redevelop the land. TPC-NOLA also wants to reopen the theme park as Jazzland and build a water park.

The board asked TPC-NOLA to come back with a more detailed plan on financing for the park.

Scurlock says he'll utilize state and local tax incentives as part of his financing, saying a project of this size will require lots of money. "The first phase is approximately $100 million, which will include the reopening of the Jazzland park as well as the addition of the water park and then opening of a back lot."

Scurlock expects the project to be so massive that additional homes will need to be built near the site. He'd like to see more than 10,000 go up.

The Industrial Development Board isn't expected to vote on the proposal Tuesday, but if his design is chosen down the line, Scurlock says he'd like to have Jazzland reopened by 2018. It could be more than 10 years before the other projects get completed.

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